Re: Pack receives threat to have charter pulled
Daniel W Brown (dabrown2@VT.EDU)
Mon, 9 Oct 1995 10:58:17 +0600
Dean Hayes had brought an interesting question that I have been wondering
about for many years. What relationship should exist between a troop and
who is responsible for maintaining that relationship?
I agree with Dean that the troop has a responsibility to "to put together a
program and actively recruit them by making the initial contacts, inviting
them on outings, and showing them how FUN scouting can be." But does the
Pack also have some responsibility? Should the Pack recruit (or at least
accept) den chiefs from the troop, keep the troop informed of thier program
and needs, conduct joint service or fund raising projects?
I think the we need do a disservice to scouting as a whole by seperating Cub
Scouting from Boy Scouting the way we do. We charter troops and packs
separatly, thier leaders attend seperate training and roundtables, and we
expect relationships to be mantained by informal structures or by the
Commissioner or COR. In a district where the commissioner service does not
exist, and an institution that has a seperate COR for each unit these links
are shakey at best. Anyone got a better idea.
I was Scoutmaster of a very old troop when our feeder Pack was closed down
by the local PTA because of the internal politics of that organization.
After two years of poor recruiting, I started a Pack in the same institution
as the Troop. I served as Cubmaster (and Scoutmaster) for the first year
and a half. After that, an Assistant Scoutmaster who had a scout in the
Weblos den took over as Cubmaster for another year and a half. For the
first three years, the troop and pack had several leaders and committee
members in common. The troop also helped the pack get started by
subsidising it until a treasury was built up, splitting the work and the
profit for our annual yard sale and by providing den chiefs.
After three years, the Pack was running well and gererating its own funds
and leaders. That's where the problems started, the next Cubmaster had a
son in another Troop in town. The Weblos Leader also had a son in that
troop and was registered as an Assistant Scoutmaster there. For several
years, all weblos automatically went to the other troop. The troop had a
good program with all adults trained and several Woodbadges among them.
They held recruiting nights and invited the Weblos to outings and none
showed up. We even tried getting the Weblos names from the council office
so we could invite them personally. That worked in some cases. After
several years of poor recruiting the troop looked like the one that Dean
described. "The troop was down to 5 boys, all of them at least a sophomore
in high-school, and 2 of them being very close to Eagle." Even the numbers
were the same as in his description. The seventy year old troop was about
thirty days from going out of bussiness when it was saved by a new
Scoutmaster who brought a few Weblos with him from another pack and a few
Chartered Organization members who did not allow thier Weblos to move to the
other unit. But a with a little cooperation from the Pack, it would not
have needed saving.
Now, three more years later, the troop has 18 members and is continuing to
rebuild. Relations between the troop and the pack are good, and we have
several families with scouts in both units.
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City